Who was John Redin?
Born: England, circa 1752.
U.S. War for Independence Service: 6th Virginia Regiment, Continental Army. There is record of a private "John Readon" enlisting in Virginia in 1777. If this is him, he missed crossing the Delaware with Washington (the regiment did, Dec. 1776) but did arrive in time for Valley Forge (winter 1777-78).
Died: 1832 in Arlington, Virginia, age 80.
Daughter married into an early Arlington family.
The rear-right-most grave below is John Redin's.
A new informational sign in memory of John Redin was erected as part of a 2013 eagle scout project. (See below.)
The new sign will definitely draw many more visitors up from the bike trail, and the proof of such is already to be seen. The flags by his grave were not there in the 2000s, as I recall (when I first read the faded words on the gravestone), nor in 2011, when I think I last stopped by. A fair number of coins, a lollipop, and some other candy in a wrapper were all left there this time. This for a man no one knows. He's been waiting a long while for that kind of attention...
John Redin's regiment was at Valley Forge in the winter of 1777-1778, the low point for the American rebels, when one in six American soldiers died of cold, disease, or malnutrition, others became too sick or weak to fight, and many others deserted and went home. The 6th Virginia regiment entered Valley Forge with 237 men and left the next spring with 88, a 63% loss of strength without so much as an actual battle.
The entire small cemetery, fenced off:
Some Ball descendants were running a tavern and store at what is now Glebe Rd and Wilson Blvd by 1800, which gave the local community the name "Ball's Crossroads;" later "Ball's Town;" finally "Ballston," the neighborhood name that survives today. Redin is buried only a mile or so west of the old Ball's Tavern and General Store.
John Redin will likely have known many members of the Ball family, as there were so few families in Arlington in those days, nothing like the 230,000 living in Arlington today (up to 320,000 during business hours, I hear), many of whom are high-income transients.
Where are the descendants of John Redin today? According to this, no one named Redin was listed as a resident of Virginia in the 2000 census.
In 2000, there were only 279 people with the last name Redin living in the US. Historically, the name has been most prevalent in the West. However, it is especially popular in South Dakota.